Nike's Temple (nike2422) wrote,
Nike's Temple
nike2422

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A Most Unhealing Diet

My father recently took a nasty fall down some stairs. He broke four ribs, shattered his collar bone and punctured a lung. On top of his other health problems, he's going to take a long time to mend.

He's been moved from the emergency hospital to a rehab hospital. The place is clean, the staff are great, and he has a TV with a DVD player so he can watch lots of movies while his body heals. With my Dad's other health concerns, it will take him longer to heal. The food they're giving him however will make the process even more difficult.

I visited Dad yesterday, and I was there during two of his meals. He joked about how strict they were on what he was allowed to order because of his health problems. "If I order eggs for breakfast, I can't have any sausage." He told me, as I picked up the menu and read through the list of options. The protein options are standard 4 oz. cuts of meat or fish, and some of the meats have an option of being served breaded and fried. After he chooses his entré, he has various breads, pasta, rice, potatoes with gravy to choose from. The vegetables are all boiled, except for the garden salad. Thank goodness.

And then there are the desserts! Yes, dad is allowed dessert, because in the United States not eating something sweet after a meal is unheard of. For lunch, they brought him a cup of orange sherbet and gave him sugar-free orange jello. For supper, the dessert item was a large wedge of angel food cake, and they gave him fruit for his meal.

My Dad is diabetic with a three insulin shot-a-day habit. They checked his sugar between meals and it was 274! Not surprising, when they gave him a huge pile of mashed potatoes with gravy, jello, AND sherbet. When Dad's dinner arrived the cod he ordered was a 4 oz. portion, and the rest of the plate was piled high with Promise margarined 'buttered' noodles.

Protein is a vitally important nutrient for anyone with serious injuries needed to heal. They give him shakes with each meal, but Dad didn't say they were protein shakes, but made up of other substances the doctor wanted him to have. I considered the options I would have picked from that menu if I were there and I probably would have more than one argument with the dietitian. Then, I would have someone sneak in plenty of protein shakes to supplement the anemic protein servings.

What passes for a healthy hospital diet is appalling. I know they hire professionals to make up the menus, people with college degrees and initials after their names to give them the veneer of authority. My diabetic Dad with broken ribs, punctured lung and shattered collar bone is not going to heal with a steady diet of noodles, sherbet and angel food cake.
Tags: angel food cake, diabetic, orange sherbet, protein, unhealing diet
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